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February 24th, 2004


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08:34 pm
OK, I need to hear from as many of you as I can in the next 90 or so minutes: do I want to go to a midnight showing of "The Passion of the Christ"? Doing so will not have a terribly huge bearing on my work tomorrow.

Comment! Quickly!

(18 points | Discuss)

Comments:


[User Picture]
From:jrstraus
Date:February 24th, 2004 06:59 pm (UTC)

no way

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the wife and I say no, but the crazy people that are there might be entertaining.
[User Picture]
From:arettber
Date:February 24th, 2004 07:50 pm (UTC)

Re: no way

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Jen, when did you get a wife? I'm not even sure what joke I should make here.
[User Picture]
From:jrstraus
Date:February 25th, 2004 06:46 am (UTC)

Re: no way

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oh boy. obviously hobie was accidentally logged in as me. the wife.
[User Picture]
From:loosestrudel
Date:February 24th, 2004 07:33 pm (UTC)
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I say go if you're not paying full price for tickets. I won't shell out the ten bucks to see it in first run theatre, but I'd rent the thing. If someone else is paying your way, it's a no-brainer.

After all, there's hardly any room to complain about a thing unless you experience it.
[User Picture]
From:arettber
Date:February 24th, 2004 07:50 pm (UTC)
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Only if you can sneak in, or steal something on your way out.
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From:hannibalv
Date:February 24th, 2004 07:54 pm (UTC)
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I've just got four words for you:

FREAKING OUT THE NORMALS.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:February 24th, 2004 08:17 pm (UTC)

NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO

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I don't need to go into the reasons not to support religious fundamentalism and the hate mongering that goes with it. I'll just tell you the same thing I've told all of the friends who have tried to get me to go, (offering to pay for the ticket and using the "it's so controversial, don't you want to see and judge it for yourself?" argument), A) any literal depiction of the gospels is terribly anti-semitic, the only thing to see for yourself is to what degree the film focuses on "evil jews", and B) it doesn't matter whose ten bucks it is- every ass in a seat funds that view and says to the rest of the world that in this day and age it's still an acceptable one to hold and promote. That's my take.
surlychick
From:(Anonymous)
Date:February 24th, 2004 08:22 pm (UTC)

Re: NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO

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p.s.
it may well be that I just got too much of that crap during k- second grade church school. I freely admit to being a rather hard core atheist, which clouds my opinion.
surly
[User Picture]
From:somebodystrange
Date:February 25th, 2004 05:18 am (UTC)

Too late to respond

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Okay, I know you're going to immediately assume that my opinion is tainted by my being a Christian, but bear in mind I am BY FAR more liberal than most Christians. I have to respond to some of the above.

The film, while made by a religious director/producer with the goal of showing the gospel of Jesus, is only partially intended to be a religious film. It's supposed to be a historic film. I know, I know. It's a history tainted by religious interpretation. I know. But the vast majority of people believe that Jesus really existed and that his crucifixion really occurred. The film is supposed to focus on the final twelve hours of his life. Yes, there are flashbacks that I understand show some of his miracles. Yes, there is a brief resurrection scene at the end. If you consider the Bible as literature, then take those scenes as stories. That's fine. I have no issue with that.

But if you're taking the Bible as literature, this film is basically "the movie of the book." The representation of the torture and crucifixion of Jesus are as realistically accurate as possible if the story is taken at face value.

And I hate the statement that any representation of the story of Christ is going to be anti-Semitic. I understand why people say that -- the crucifixion of Jesus has long been an excuse by anti-Semitic people for why Jews are "evil". But to me, that's taking the excuse of an ignorant, stupid sect of pseudo-Christians who believe in violence and hatred, and deciding that their racism must have been the goal of the story.

For ages, people have taken writings and stories and interpreted them in negative ways. But unless your claim is that Christians who believe the gospel are inherently anti-Semitic… or, as I believe may be more proper, anti-Jewish… then the story itself is not to blame.

I am a Christian. Most of my friends are Christian. Almost everyone I grew up with was a Christian. I have known, literally, thousands of Christians. And while I will wholeheartedly agree that many of them are rat-bastard ass-hats, I have never -- never -- heard any of them claim that Jews are to be held responsible for the death of Jesus – or anything even remotely similar. Yes, there are racist Christians out there (a two-word phrase that shouldn't exist), but they are, despite media hype, rare.

I can't stress enough how much I hate the idea that the story of Jesus could be inherently anti-Semitic. It can be interpreted that way, yes. It can also be interpreted, as it has been, as an allegory. Or as a secret message that we all have evolving miraculous powers. Or as a hidden numeric code that reveals the galactic birthplace of the human race. All of these interpretations have been given. The anti-Semitic one, unfortunately, gathered quite a following at various historical times, even as late as Nazi Germany, but it is an interpretation, and not the story itself.

That being said, I can't wait to see it. Even if I weren't a Christian (and many of my Christian friends no longer consider me one), it's the movie of a book about a rebellious philosopher whose story inspired sweeping world changes. Historically, even if Jesus didn't exist, people believed he did, and this is the story they believed… which alone gives it huge significance.

The reason I don't think YOU should go see it is because a lot of the people in the crowd will remind you, very strongly, of me during freshman year of college. That is to say, deeply faithful to their unquestioning beliefs and easily moved to tears with religious fervor. I grew up surrounded by crowds like this, and it's bothersome if you're not part of it.

--Strange/David
[User Picture]
From:somebodystrange
Date:February 25th, 2004 05:18 am (UTC)

Re: Too late to respond

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Oops. Open tag. Sorry.
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From:jrstraus
Date:February 25th, 2004 10:25 am (UTC)

Re: Too late to respond

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A question:
Don't Christians regard the crucifiction as a good thing? Don't they celebrate it as God's will, Jesus giving his life for the good Christians, etc, etc? If that's so, how can Christians hate Jews for killing Christ? Shouldn't they be thanking them?

Also: "rat-bastard ass-hats"... I'm amused.
[User Picture]
From:somebodystrange
Date:February 25th, 2004 11:45 am (UTC)

Re: Too late to respond

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=)

I'm not sure if "thanking" anybody, Jews, Romans, or otherwise, for the torture of Jesus is on any Christian's agenda. See, this is where this gets mentally sticky for me... bear with me on these hypotheticals, and keep in mind I am saying these things as a Christian. If as a Christian I believe that Jesus rose from the dead to save the world from sin... and if I believe this was inevitable and foretold by prophecy...

...then it kind of distorts the whole concept of free will. Somebody had to kill him. It happened to be a few soldiers acting on orders from politicians bending to the will of a mob riled by authoritarian egomaniacs in fear for their power. But somebody had to be responsible. Somebody, like Judas Iscariot, had to betray him. If it's foretold, it had to happen, or what's the point of foretelling?

And if it had to happen, were those people truly responsible? And if they were not truly responsible, and free will was not a factor, then is free will ever a factor? And if not, why did we need a Savior?

So, yeah, it's a bit complex even for me, and I've spent a lifetime asking myself and theologians questions like these.

But yeah, if he hadn't been killed, then we wouldn't be saved, so his death (and resurrection, can't forget the resurrection) is a good thing, so why be pissed off at the people who helped bring about the salvation of the world? In my opinion, even the torture was "necessary". So there's no point in being mad. But some of those aforementioned rat-bastard ass-hats (I like that phrase, too), particularly the ignorant, stupid, racist types, decide that hey! We don't like that race of people, and here's another reason to hate them! Grrr! Get 'em!

And as I posted on my own LJ recently, the concept of deicide is rather weak. At best, if you believe in Jesus as the resurrected Savior, it was attempted deicide. (By law, as far as I am familiar with it for most states, if a person is killed but is then resuscitated, the perpetrator can't be charged with murder... just attempted murder.)

So, yeah. Necessary bad stuff, free will in question, rat-bastard ass-hat racists misusing misinformation for evil purposes, not the fault of the rest of us.

--Strange/David
[User Picture]
From:hannibalv
Date:February 25th, 2004 11:03 pm (UTC)

Re: Too late to respond

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The reason I don't think YOU should go see it is because a lot of the people in the crowd will remind you, very strongly, of me during freshman year of college. That is to say, deeply faithful to their unquestioning beliefs and easily moved to tears with religious fervor. I grew up surrounded by crowds like this, and it's bothersome if you're not part of it.

I dunno. Unless there was, like, genuinely angry talk behind my back, I had fun with being around people like that (I recently realized that I should have just appointed myself the Church of Satan's missionary to Valpo). Now, my interest in seeing it is primarily filmic, but to some degree I also want to watch the audience, and gauge how they're reacting and who they are. But then, I'm a little strange.
From:e_m_s
Date:February 25th, 2004 06:59 am (UTC)

Grip needed

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I have not seen this movie yet (I fully intend to, there aren't many movies that I don't want to see) but I can at least recognize that that is all that it is: a movie.

With some of the comments made here it seems that there is little difference between the fear soaked intolerant insecure far right religious flaming nutballs and the fear soaked intolerant insecure far left secular flaming nutballs.* Hannibal asked if he thought going to see a movie, images of actors printed on semi-transparent celluloid that will be projected on a screen for his entertainment was a bad idea. Perhaps both sides have made this more of an issue than it truly is.

And personally, I have faith that Hannibal's beliefs are strong enough that watching a movie won't make him a raving fundamentalist.


*See Jen, I told you I like that phrase.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:February 25th, 2004 04:23 pm (UTC)

last comment for clarification

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While I do not believe that seeing a movie will turn anyone into a raving fundamentalist of any sort, I am quite sure that the reigning raving fundamentalists of this country will latch onto anything, including the success of what is simply "a movie" as a sign that this country is in line with their beliefs and that all focus should be placed on the crisis of faith that is really threatening our nation. The fact that our president is trying to make preservation of the sanctity of marriage between man and woman the sole focus of debate to take the focus off of our economic woes and his completely unjust war should be noted by anyone thinking me a raving secular fundamentalist. Should your politics dictate which arts you support? Each person needs to decide that for themselves. I don't believe that most Christians are raving fundamentalists, nor do I believe they are hateful, but a sad and vocal power wielding handful makes it hard for a person with a different view to live as they choose. I simply gave my feelings on the matter, which is quite close to the individual hearts of people on both sides of the argument. He asked for as many opinions as possible. That was, and is, mine.
Surlychick
From:e_m_s
Date:February 26th, 2004 07:22 am (UTC)

Re: last comment for clarification

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I hope that you didn’t get the impression that I was attacking your opinions. I personally am very happy that you did post it, and that it possibly started a conversation about the beliefs that helped form your opinion (or mine or anyone else’s).

And I agree. Our current President may very well decide that the success of this movie points to a nation trying to reconnect with its lost spirituality. And if he decides to make religion and the “sanctity” of marriage his main campaign points, I think he will regret it.

Why you ask? Imagine if every single gay person who now had the ability to marry voted this issue. I don’t think he would continue to hold office. Or if every single non-Christian voted on the basis of their faith, again Bush would have a lot of packing to do come November.

Of course there is possibility that the next joker we put in office will be no better (guarding against this is our responsibility as voters). And all I ask is that we continue to question our leaders, even when we agree with most of their policies. Because as I hinted in my earlier post, those on the extremes of either side are a frightening lot, and surrendering authority to them should be done minimally, if at all.

As for politics dictating what arts should be supported, to me any act of creativity (be it a movie, song, speech, poem, book, bathroom graffiti, etc.) that is not actively calling for harm to come to a segment of the population (ie. hate-speeches and the sort) or inciting violence should be supported. It doesn’t matter whose values or beliefs the work of art exposes, as long as it fits the criteria listed above it should be encouraged and protected. And right now it is, by our first amendment rights.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:February 26th, 2004 04:38 pm (UTC)

Re: last comment for clarification

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completely understood, and I hope that my opinions were taken with minimal offense, as I meant none.
surly
From:e_m_s
Date:February 27th, 2004 06:16 am (UTC)

Re: last comment for clarification

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No offense taken at all.

:)

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